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Schools for Misrule

Legal Academia and an Overlawyered America

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Publication Details

Hardcover / 296 pages
ISBN: 1594032335
PUBLISHED: 3/1/2011

Schools for Misrule
Legal Academia and an Overlawyered America

From Barack Obama (Harvard and Chicago) to Bill and Hillary Clinton (Yale), many of our current national leaders emerged from the rarefied air of the nation’s top law schools. The ideas taught there in one generation often shape national policy in the next.

The trouble is, Walter Olson reveals in Schools for Misrule, our elite law schools keep churning out ideas that are catastrophically bad for America. From class action lawsuits that promote the right to sue anyone over anything, to court orders mandating the mass release of prison inmates; from the movement for slavery reparations, to court takeovers of school funding—all of these appalling ideas were hatched in legal academia. And the worst is yet to come. A fast-rising movement in law schools demands that sovereignty over U.S. legal disputes be handed over to international law and transnational courts.

It is not by coincidence, Olson argues, that these bad ideas all tend to confer more power on the law schools’ own graduates. In the overlawyered society that results, they are the ones who become the real rulers.

About the Author

Walter Olson is an author and critic whose acclaimed books—The Litigation Explosion, The Excuse Factory, and The Rule of Lawyers—have changed the way we think about the American legal system. A senior fellow at the Cato Institute, he is a frequent contributor to the Wall Street Journal and other leading newspapers and has written columns for Great Britain’s Times Online and Reason. His online work includes, widely cited as the oldest blog about law.

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